About the Music Circle

The Music Circle
has been the leading force in bringing the finest Indian classical music and dance to Southern California since its founding by Ravi Shankar and Harihar Rao in 1973.

Our mission is to foster awareness, appreciation, and understanding of the classical music of India—one of the world's great musical treasures—by providing a supportive and inspiring platform for its leading exponents, especially for those emerging and acclaimed artists destined to be tomorrow's masters.

During a typical season, The Music Circle presents 6 to 8 concerts between September and June by established masters as well as lesser-known but very talented younger artists. In addition, we produce occasional festivals, workshops, events in cooperation with other organizations, and community outreach programs.

Our culturally diverse membership
attests to the universal appeal of Indian music. Each season, members number about 300-400 people with a shared enthusiasm for the arts of India. (Click here for information about membership.)
In the days of princely India, maharajas and nawabs supported classical musicians and dancers and their families. With the decline of the courtly lifestyle, patronage of classical arts passed to small groups of connoisseurs who jointly sponsored performances of the classical art, rescuing these priceless traditions from oblivion. These groups—called kacheri in the south and mehfil in the north—were the nurturing audiences for the next generation of artists.

In that spirit, the Music Circle supports Indian artists by providing a serene and comfortable concert atmosphere with meticulous attention to detail, making every performance an auditory and visual joy for both artist and audience.

Volunteers make our programs possible, providing invaluable assistance with production, administration and community out reach. (Click here for information about volunteering.)

The Music Circle Board of Directors generously donate their time, drawing from their professional and corporate experience to organize fundraising and guide our public relations. (Click here to see a list of current board members.)

The Music Circle is a California nonprofit, tax-exempt organization, with no paid staff or directors. A part-time paid consultant provides vital administrative assistance. Since our low ticket rates do not cover the costs of our presentations, we depend entirely on grants and the generosity of people like you to meet our expenses.
For further information, e-mail us at MusicCircle@aol.com or call us at 626-449-6987.



"Harihar Rao remembers the day the Music Circle was born. Ravi Shankar and he were strolling through the beautiful campus of Occidental College, and they walked into the calm inviting chapel. Sunlight was streaming in through large stained glass windows, and in the peaceful stillness of this sacred place two men, lovers of music, decided to create the Music Circle."

Excerpt from

For the Love of Music, an article by Ansuya Bijur



Music Circle concerts and master classes are supported in part by grants and awards from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, the Alliance for California Traditional Arts, Living History Center, and the National Endowment for the Arts.